Featherdale Wildlife Park, home to the largest captive colony of koalas in New South Wales, is gearing up to welcome kids during the upcoming school holidays.
With Blinky Bill the Movie, the classic children’s story of Australia’s favourite koala, hitting the screens on September 17th, fans of the Australian furry icon can see the real thing and more at Featherdale.
And the recent birth of six koala joeys, with three already visible in the pouch, gives kids and their families even more reasons to visit Featherdale Wildlife Park this September. Each year the park breeds between four to six joeys with a constant population of around 40 koalas. In its 43 years of operation, Featherdale has successfully bred more than 210 koalas.
Koala encounters, which include the opportunity to pat these furry favourites, run all day at the Park and are free of charge – the only wildlife park in Sydney to offer this amazing privilege.
September is also Save the Koala month and, as threats to wild koala populations increase, it is vitally important that wildlife institutions such as Featherdale play a conservation role in highlighting the plight of the species.
Koalas are listed as vulnerable in the ACT, New South Wales and Queensland due to factors including road fatalities, introduced species, the destruction of habitats and disease.
A critical part of Featherdale’s continued commitment to koala conservation was the formation of a partnership with GE Health. By using their state-of-the-art diagnostic ultrasound machine, Featherdale can identify fertility and breeding availability as well as injuries and illness.
This means that early detection of any potential reproductive problems means that treatment can commence quickly which substantially increases the chances of a full recovery and reduces future reproduction issues.
Chad Staples, General Curator at Featherdale, said: “What’s not to love about the koala? We are delighted that there is such a focus on the koala – with the launch of Blinky Bill the Movie and Save the Koala month – and we think it’s critical to provide education to our visitors to ensure the ongoing conservation of this important Australian icon.”
Home to 2,200 Australian native animals from more than 260 different species, there are countless opportunities to get up close and personal with many of our furry and feathery creatures during the school holidays including:
- The chance to meet Archer the koala – voted the cutest animal in Australia
- Opportunities to feed kangaroos, echidna and emus
- Take a selfie with a quokka – the happiest animal on earth!
- Come and get scary with the Tasmanian Devils at feeding time
- Get Rapt in Reptiles
- Bilby Babble – hear about these wonderful little critters on National Bilby Day on Sunday September 13 and contribute to the Save the Bilby fund
Featherdale is located at 217 Kildare Road Doonside and is open 9am to 5pm daily. Visit www.featherdale.com.au or call 02 9622 1644 for more information.